Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

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DougENash
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Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by DougENash » 27 Sep 2023 18:54

Hello Everyone,
this is a follow-up to an earlier thread of a couple of years ago about the Jewish woman, 17-year old Sara (or Sarah) Bergmann, who worked for SS Sturmbannfuehrer Dr. Oskar Dirlewanger as a translator and domestic when he was stationed in the Lublin area of Poland throughout 1941, before the Dirlewanger Einheit was shipped off to fight partisans in Belarus. There were rumors that he was sleeping with her, thus committing "Rassenschande," a serious offense in the Third Reich in general and in the SS in particular.

An investigation was launched at the behest of the local SS and Police court, based on an anonymous tipster who clearly had an axe to grind with Dirlewanger. Anyway, I just found the complete Bundesarchiv file of the matter (R-58/7633), which also included charges of embezzlement, theft, extortion, smuggling, prostitution, and other offenses that Dirlewanger and his troops were alleged to have committed. The investigation ran from the Autumn of 1941 until about February 1945, when Himmler finally ordered the investigation to be shut down for good. I have included the charges against Dirlewanger in regards to Sara Bergmann, the resulting investigation, Dirlewanger's response, and the final outcome, all translated into English.

Part 1: The initiation of the investigation

Initial Investigation and Witness Statement Summaries (14 August, 1942, pp. 11–14, images 0062–0068)

Point C. The Racial Defilement with the Jewish Woman Bergmann.

Dr. Dirlewanger is accused of having committed racial defilement with the Jewish woman Sara Bergmann.
The Sara Bergmann complex occupies the greatest space in the investigation of the writer of the anonymous letters and Dr. Dirlewanger, since this Jewish woman seems to have been the main reason for the estrangement between Dr. Dirlewanger and the members of his command.
About the way in which this Jewish woman became acquainted with Dr. Dirlewanger, the following can be stated:
The 17-year-old Jewish girl Sara Bergmann came to Dr. Dirlewanger one day in Dzikow-Stary and asked for work. Dr. Dirlewanger told her that he would first employ her for a few days on a trial basis and only then decide whether he wanted to keep her. Since Dr. Dirlewanger was satisfied with her work, he kept Fraulein Bergmann and she has been employed by him ever since. Her work was partly that of a kitchen maid, partly that of an interpreter. She was present at the interrogations conducted by Dr. Dirlewanger and accompanied Dr. Dirlewanger in the motor car on business trips.
Bergmann, who was Jewish, was initially employed by Dr. Dirlewanger in Dzikow-Stary, where she had her own apartment. Later, when Dr. Dirlewanger's command was transferred to Lublin, the Jewish Bergmann was brought there. In Lublin, too, she was given her own apartment, but worked a lot at Dr. Dirlewanger's office.

The men of the command rejected the Jewish Bergmann. The SS man Kannegiesser said: Until January 1941 he had been on good terms with Dr. Dirlewanger. "This changed when Dr. Dirlewanger appointed the Jewish woman Bergmann as his maid." The Jewish woman had been lazy and dirty. He had immediately urged her to work properly, but she had cheekily replied that she was only employed as an interpreter by Dr. Dirlewanger. This had caused him (Kannegiesser) to have a row with her. He had to assume that the Jewish woman Bergmann had bad-mouthed him to Dr. Dirlewanger, because Dr. Dirlewanger's behavior toward the witness from that time on was no longer as good as it had been earlier. The Jewish woman Bergmann had constantly been around Dr. Dirlewanger and had really been under his protection. He attributed it to her influence that he had been dismissed as a lad and canteen manager in March 1941 when he returned from vacation.

The SS-Unterscharführer Eibl expressed himself in the same way about the deterioration of the relationship between Dr. Dirlewanger and his men.
SS-Rottenführer Selzer, however, is not aware of any deterioration in relations between Dr. Dirlewanger and his men after the appearance of the Jewish woman Bergmann.

According to the accused, he did not realize the deterioration of his relationship with his men. He is of the opinion that his men wrongly believed that the Jewish woman was telling on them.

Dr. Dirlewanger thus admits that the Jewish woman Bergmann was in his service, but he denies ever having had sexual intercourse with her.
This admission is confirmed by many witnesses.

The Jewish woman Sara Bergmann denies having had sexual intercourse with Dr. Dirlewanger.

SS-Unterscharführer Eibel calls the allegation that Dr. Dirlewanger had intercourse with the Jewish woman Bergmann a lie.

SS-Rottenführer Selzer denies that intercourse had taken place. Such an intercourse was also impossible without him having to notice it.

It is unknown to SS Hauptscharführer Kluss whether there was any intercourse between Dr. Dirlewanger and the Jewish woman Bergmann.

SS-Sturmmann Strumpf does not believe that there were any closer relations between the two.

Only SS-man Buehler testifies that it was generally believed among the command staff that Dr. Dirlewanger had a relationship with the Jewish woman Bergmann.

Conclusion: It may be that there were rumors in command that Dr. Dirlewanger actually had an intimate relationship with the Jewish woman Bergmann. However, the investigations did not provide any proof of the existence of racial defamation.

In the absence of evidence, proceedings against Dr. Dirlewanger from point C. cannot be initiated.

DougENash
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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by DougENash » 27 Sep 2023 18:56

Part II: Dirlewanger's Response

DIRLEWANGER’s response to the accusation, dated 1 September 1942 (p. 5, image 0090)

IV. Racial defilement

I deny most emphatically that I have committed racial defilement against the Jewish woman Sarah Bergmann. The Jewish woman Bergmann was a kitchen maid with me and, since she spoke fluent German and Polish, was called upon to perform interpreting services. The Jewess Bergmann was treated by me as what she was, namely a Jewess who had to do the most menial work for me.

It is true that she was often beaten, but it was on my behalf and my men, and never without reason. It is possible that she has also been beaten by myself, but then she deserved it. She was punished mostly because of her impudence. I did not have to punish her for uncleanliness. If the men of my command assume that she is an intermediary for some of the men's affairs, they are mistaken. I do not need a Jewish woman as an intermediary between me and my men.

It is very understandable that I did all I could to free her from prison. Bergmann, who was Jewish, had been arrested together with 4 other Jewish women who were accused of racial defilement. These 4 Jewish women were immediately released, as the suspicion against them turned out to be unfounded, and continued to work at their old jobs, while the Jewish woman Bergmann remained in custody, and thus the suspicion was aroused among my men that the anonymous denunciator was right.

In order to put an end to this nonsense, I constantly pleaded for the release of the Jewish woman, especially after the Security Service had explained to me through SS-Untersturmführer Walter that it was perfectly clear that the accusation had been falsely made and that nothing more stood in the way of her release. I offered Brigadier Globocnik to release the Jewish woman for 14 days, so that she could see my men again, and then I would have her shot or bring her back to prison, if he so pleased.

It was not until half a year later that the Jewish woman Bergmann was actually released, but she did not return to my household, but to her homeland. Her release was made so secret that no one knew that she had been released from prison. I myself found out only a few days later.
As witnesses to the numerous beatings that the Jewish woman Bergmann received, I refer you to the men of my command. They can also testify that there was never any question of sexual intercourse with the Jewish woman.

NOTE: An additional request for clarification of key points of Dr. Dirlewanger’s statement was sent 17 September 1942 by SS-Hauptamt – Amt I/I 3 (page 1, image 0134). Answer to questions about key points concerning Charge Nr. IV below:

Sworn statement by Dirlewanger signed on that date.

(to be continued...)

DougENash
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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by DougENash » 27 Sep 2023 19:00

Part III: FINDINGS on 2 October 1942 by SS Hauptamt I/3 Gerichtsoffizier (pp. 1–2, images 0148 – 150)

Pertaining to Charge IV:

Dr. Dirlewanger asked SS-Brigaf. Globocnik to release the Jewess Sarah Bergmann, who was in custody at the time, for a while so that the men of Dirlewanger’s command could see her; after some time she could be returned to prison and possibly shot.

Dr. Dirlewanger was accused at that time of having committed racial defilement with this Jewish woman, and several other Jewish women of the Lublin labor camp who were suspected of having committed similar acts with the command of this labor camp were released after it was determined that these accusations were unfounded, while Bergmann remained in custody after an investigation by the Lublin Sipo, which also failed to establish Dr. Dirlewanger's guilt.

At that time, after Dr. Dirlewanger had made a request to me in his capacity as staff leader of the SS and police, and after the Bergmann had been released for a certain period of time, I replied to him that I thought it was understandable if he thought he could prove his innocence to his men as well as to the members of the staff and other offices who had knowledge of this, but that in my opinion it was completely absurd to present a Jewess as the object of proof.

My proposal was to announce to Dirlewanger's command, either through SS Brigadier Globocnik or through myself, the complete groundlessness of the accusation against him, with which the former agreed and added that on this occasion he would present Dirlewanger as the man he trusted. However, Dr. Dirlewanger insisted on his demand and later these discussions were only held between the brigade leader and Dr. Dirlewanger.

This did not end the matter, but in a follow-up letter from SS-und Polizeigericht XV, Breslau to SS-Hauptamt Zentralamt I 3, Gerichtsoffizier, dated 5 October 1942 (page 1, image 0156), Re: SS-Sturmbannführer Dirlewanger: It is assumed that the investigations there in this matter have now been completed and therefore the files are requested to be returned as soon as possible.
Signed, SS-Ustuf., SS-Richter

This investigation languished for two years, and Dirlewanger repeatedly found reasons not to appear upon the request of the SS Court in Warsaw to be questioned by the primary Jurist responsible for the General Government, pleading "I am too busy fighting partisans."

DougENash
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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by DougENash » 27 Sep 2023 19:09

And then here is the interdepartmental message dated 25 January 1945 notifying the end of the procedure against Dirlewanger, based on Himmler's order. It states "After the proposal, the Reichsfuehrer-SS ordered the proceedings against SS-Oberfuehrer Dr. Dirlewanger to be discontinued."
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DougENash
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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by DougENash » 28 Sep 2023 11:33

As I said, this is just one of the charges levied against Dirlewanger that eventually did not "stick" but there were many others just as bad or worse. After reading all of them, and reviewing the crimes committed by higher authorities in the HSSPF hierarchy, the SiPo, Ordnungspolizei ad nauseum, one wonders why they (in this case, Friedrich Wilhelm Krüger and Odilo Globocnik) harbored such an animus against Dirlewanger - I have a theory, that it was because Dirlewanger was acting independently in regards to squeezing the local population in the General Government (occupied Poland) for money - both Poles and Jews - that they were becoming jealous or felt that they were not getting their fair share of the proceeds. Extortion, bribes, black market activities, outright theft of valuables - all of these things Dirlewanger and his men were accused of doing. But it seems that they weren't sharing it with those outside the unit, except perhaps with Gottlob Berger, Dirlewanger's Patron and chief benefactor. And Krüger and Globocnik, among others of equally high rank, found that intolerable. And Dirlewanger had to go. Fortunately for Dirlewanger, Berger was able to arrange he and his unit's transfer to Belorus before the whole band was arrested and thrown in jail. Remember, at the time (Autumn of 1941) the Dirlewanger Einheit was still only company-sized and intensely loyal to their commander. By no means am I an expert or authority on these matters, but there are some aspects of the behavior of SS leadership in the General Government worth discussing further.
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Peter
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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by Peter » 28 Sep 2023 17:58

Well don with your archival research. Fascinating material, thank you Doug

DougENash
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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by DougENash » 29 Sep 2023 15:23

Thanks - a little bit at a time, we keep chipping away at the past...I also had some generous help from Orlov on this one.

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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by Herr Bubikopf » 12 Feb 2024 15:25

I've been thinking - where might be ALL this treasures - Silver, Gold, ikons - ohh, HE loved to steel and burn polish and belarussian churches (with people inside).. rings, moneys (zloties), ets, ets.. from Lublin Area (poland), Weißruthenian Area (Mogilev, Logoisk..), back to poland (warsaw uprising), next - Slowakei und Hungary and at the end - Belin Area (Battle of Halbe)..

Any ideas..??

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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by J. Duncan » 13 Feb 2024 11:49

I found Mr. Nash’s explanation interesting and plausible.
Like gangsters, the two (G and FWK) expected “tributes” or a “cut” of the loot which Dirlewanger either refused or was unwilling to pay. Is this a correct ( but simple) understanding of the above?

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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by Herr Bubikopf » 13 Feb 2024 12:56

J. Duncan wrote:
13 Feb 2024 11:49
I found Mr. Nash’s explanation interesting and plausible.
Like gangsters, the two (G and FWK) expected “tributes” or a “cut” of the loot which Dirlewanger either refused or was unwilling to pay. Is this a correct ( but simple) understanding of the above?
Understand..

1. G - Globochnick (?), may'be..??

2. FWK - Friedrich Willhelm Krüger..

..but don't miss ''the Third One'':

3. GB - Gottlob Berger..

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''Antifasch. In SS-Uniform'' - ''200 polnischen Gänse und ein Teppich als Geschenk für Weihnachtsfesten 1941 from polnischen Stadt Lutzk (Lutsk).. ''

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Наздарове друзей!

DougENash
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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by DougENash » 19 Feb 2024 15:24

No one really knows what happened to Dirlewanger's hoard of stolen goods. He might have stashed them in or near his home town of Esslingen, or perhaps near Althausen (where he was murdered shortly after the war). Perhaps one reason why he was so severely beaten by his guards (the actual cause of his death) could have been his captors' desire to know where he stored his loot. Whether he revealed the location must remain a mystery.

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Der Ewige Wilddieb

Post by Herr Bubikopf » 19 Feb 2024 22:55

''Antifasch. in SS-Unifoform'', H. P. K. 1991:

Seite: ??

''..Hier stärken Wölfe. Nächste Woche zum Wolfsjagd « erwartete . Die entsprechenden Flugverbindungen waren bereits organisiert . Wie ein Angehöriger der Einhein mitteilte, kam der Leiter der SS-Hauptamtes ''öftens mit den Flugzeug'' vorbei: ''Meistens brachte Berger 1 -2 Offiziere aus BERLIN mit.''..

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Re: Oskar Dirlewanger and Sara Bergmann Part II

Post by Herr Bubikopf » 20 Feb 2024 13:25

''..It is true that she was often beaten, but it was on my behalf..''

Daß, ER (Oskar Paul Dirlewanger) ein Sadist war - WAR.. - Das ist die Wahrheit.. (unbequem, aber wahr. (This is the truth - unpleasant, but true.))..

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Rostislaw Murawjow(v) (Ростилав Мурайлвйов) - ''Left Hand'' des Sturmbannführer O. P. D. und ''russische Übersetzer'', ünterstellt bei ''Batallion Dirlewanger'', (1941 - 1944) Weißruthenien - ((Partisanen-Jägd Jähren)), he saw HER in Dirlewanger Headquartires in Mogilew (Mogilev, Mogiljow, Могилвйов, МогилеВ)..!! .. und Lagoisk, Lahoisk, Лагойск.. SHE was in Lublin Standort (General Gouvernment (polen) born..!!

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''SHE was dirty and lazy.. (Sara(h) Bergmann)'':

THAT'S ist eine Unwahrheit (Lüge) - SHE was ONE of the most Beautiful Woman on the Earth - BLONDE UND CLEAN!!

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